Week 12-Final Project-Earthquake

Earthquakes’ train

The tremor briefly ripples desiccated dirt on the road in parallel lines. Stillness follows. A starling whistles once, then again. Wind blows west and rustles the prairie grass. Chiseled men relax. They return to dig and pick apart the hardened earth with steel pickaxes. Dust clouds fills nostrils and mouths. Sweat pours down their chins. Shirts come off. Sun burns.

Look! A flock of starlings abruptly lift westward from telephone wire. Active men squeal to a halt. Rumbles tingle toes. The numbing of feet forge waves of fear straight through toughened bodies. Jelly legs and panicked voices forewarn men and beasts: Earth’s westbound train approaches. Nails and hammer drop with a thud. Weak waves of dirt flutter in reply. Hundreds of feet begin to stampede in differing directions.

The other men bustle past me. Their shoulders shove mine as they scramble to safety up the cactus-peppered landscape. I fall in line onto my hands and knee; I press my right ear to the ground. I eat dirt and listen. The deafening roar of vibrating earth intermixes with churning wheels. Not sure how far, now. Teams of horses whinny and rear. I push up and run out of the way one second before hooves crash down where I crawled. My stomach derails with shockwaves of adrenaline.

I howl in helpless pulses. Faces around me melt with fear. The inevitable groundbreaking eruption fuels fights. Fist knock hats off balding heads. The beat of the breaking earth trembles louder. How many of the men here will survive? Will I? I slap my face. Wake up, Sam! Don’t freeze up now. A straight path opens up on my left between the Mill and the General Store. Time slows. Hobos cling to the stores’ wood siding. Slate shingles fracture at their feet. The last water barrel topples. Water ejects in thick rivulets. I run, full speed ahead.

Injun arrows cross country above my head as I steam onward into their path. Undeterred, I grit my teeth and put my head down as I run. Ululations thunder out the sounds of my heart beating in my ears. Windows rattle from the increase frequencies underfoot. Cracks split panes. Men slip and fall. Animals scatter and trample. At the last possible moment, I flatten myself against the side of the General Store as the Injuns scream on by me. I watch. The sheriff crumples into a pile of flesh. Blood-soaked dirt swells.

My mental switch flips. I turn sharply on my spurs and run against the undulating flow of teeming Injuns. A tomahawk sails past my head and into the wood. Twang! Rifle shots mix with metal slicing into skin. Short screams reverberate between the stores’ walls. Bile and disgust rise in my throat. Sweat overtakes tears that leak from the corner of my eyes. I breathe in hard. And I run. Gasping, I emerge from the human tunnel and keep going. The crescendo of disintegrating buildings fuels an explosion of debris and dust behind me. Its force blasts me onto my face.

The Mill’s foundation cracks opens and yawns. Wham! Earth rips apart with the sounds of two freight trains that crash full throttle. The Mill shatters and disappears. Burning fuel sears my nose and lungs. I taste blood and dirt. My legs shiver. I collapse. I wait for the shaking and the screaming to stop. I close my eyes and come to a standstill.

When I regain awaken, my temples are pounding. I get to my feet, swaying woozily. A familiar shape lies on the ground. I limp over to the other man, kneel, and push him over on his back. I look into the face of my youngest brother, Jesse.

Jesse? Is that you? Wake up, brother. Wake up! Come on. We gotta get out of here!

I shake him somethin’ awful.
He doesn’t move.

Week 11 Assignment-Old Swimming Hole

This assignment ends Week 11 of my BerkleeMusic course called “Creative Writing: Finding Your Voice.” The criteria for the assignment are:

  1. Pick a collision from this week
  2. Pick a point of view
  3. Pick your verb tenses
  4. 300-500 words
  5. Include the title in your assignment

Other criteria that we’ve used in our assignments include: varying sentence length and varying sentence type (statement, command, conditional, questions). I included those as well.

Collision Title: Old Swimming Hole -> Temptation -> Jewels in an Unlocked Case
Point of View: First Person
Tenses: Present, Future

Week 11 Assignment

The turquoise waters of the old swimming hole tempt me with their alluring glitter. I thrill from the age-old desire to grab forbidden treasures and make a quick escape. Nervousness floods my mouth. My lips tremble. I lick my sweaty upper lip. I slowly look around. First, left; then, right. I see no one. I hear only rippling waters, tweeting sparrows, and reeds hushing each other as the wind sneaks by. With no alarms raised, I pull off my tank top and toss it on the ground besides me. I forcefully breathe in the emerald marsh air. Ah!, I sigh aloud. I pause to listen, but no one answers.

I go over the plan again in my mind: I will lunge my left leg backwards, ready both fists by my side, bounce three times, and take off. I will race down the weathered diving plank as if the police were in pursuit. My imaginary pursuers will reach for me too late as I spring off the edge of the board and into topaz waters. The plank’s thrumming will drown out the coppers’ anguished cries. The anticipation dries my mouth with the taste of mineral salts. Will this work? A red-tailed hawk scolds me: Stop wasting time. Silver fear infuses my nostrils. I rub my shoulders hard to psyche myself up with bravery.

My ears perk up at the pale sounds of far away laughter. Now: do it now, I mentally yell. Adrenaline floods my limbs. I sloppily throw my left leg back, makes fists, and bounce twice. I sprint down the plank at full speed. At the last moment, I launch. As I descend from the high arc, I hold my knees tightly and close my eyes. I slam through the pearl surface. Water roars into my ear canals and penetrates my mouth. I open up completely, kick my legs, and spin until dizzy. I come up with arms outstretched, gasping for air. Approaching laughter is my final warning. If I don’t get out now, I’ll be seen.

I scrabble haltingly out of the pool of liquid jewels. Each falling droplet leaves a semiprecious trail of temporary clues. I roughly yank my tank top back over my head and down onto my torso. I smell hot August sun drying the last aquamarine memories from my skin. Alum, the fool’s gold of the swimming hole, tarts my tongue. I tiptoe into the tourmaline thicket down a rarely used footpath. I periodically turn back to look for the swimming hole. When I no longer see it, I breathe a sigh of relief. I keep walking. I do not stop or look back. My sandals crunch sticks pleasingly. I whistle victory at my easy escape.

Week 11-Day 5-Old Swimming Hole

Old Swimming Hole -> Temptation -> Diamonds in an Unlocked Jewelry Case
The water sparkles invitingly. You reach out tentatively to touch the icy reflection. A million bright lights cut out in angles on the horizon. You squint and blink, pain cutting your eyeballs ever so lightly. Noises! Behind you! You swivel as a thief in rubber-soled shoes, freezing in place. Your eyes scan the scenery for any movement. Only the sound of rippling water greets you. Slowly you reposition yourself and slip your toes in. Pause. No alarms. You put both feet in. Water shimmers around your ankles. No other customers around to dive in. No lifeguard to protect the old swimming hole from intruders. You dive in, the thrill of the chase buoys and propels you. You’re in now. The point of no return. You’re in deep. You rise up for air, gasping. No one’s around to hear you rooting around the place. Yes! You backflip under water. You breaststroke quickly to shore. The place is all yours! No finger prints. You can turn over each piece in the case. Shells, rocks, seaweed, an old boot. It feels good to be bad! No one can catch you now. You fill your heart full of these shiny memories that glitter. Temptation. Fascination. Admiration. You scrabbled out of the pond of liquid jewels, each one dropping off you in a million tiny pieces. You dry off. Water on your skin disappears. Watery fool’s gold. You escape the shop without being seen. No video surveillance to catch your raid. Just dark foot-shaped shadows on the dirt.

Unlocked diamonds in a jewelry case are an old swimming hole 
The pool of glitter temps you. You squint, looking from the corner of your eye. Looking at the shimmer head on? Daggers of pain hit your cornea. Laugher peals out of the swimming hole, temping you to take a dip in its forbidden treasure. Other kids splash and play. They flaunt their watery wealth on their necks. Heads emerge from the black velvety depths. Sun radiates their pearly necks laced with water droplets. The peer pressure bears down on you. You join your partners in crime, digging into the fresh-water case. Joy. Freedom. No parents are around. No lifeguards. Just you, the others, and your wet playground. Water games enrich your day. The unrecorded activities whet your confidence that you will all pull  off the swimming hole heist. Your swimming suit pockets fill with abundance, seep out, then refill. Each fill brings a bigger cache of memories. Adult footsteps crack on sticks. Oh, no. You scramble unevenly to escape your summery den. Hurry! You wave to the others.  Arms and legs brush off the proof of your crime. Towels soak up the blame. Squeals reveal your location. Caught! Your parents see you quickly trying to hide your tracks. Stop! Your father stares. Your mother crosses arms. Feet tap impatience. Come! You hang your head in shame. I’m guilty! Guilty as charged! You lift your head defiantly. Your ear is turned. Ouch! You are dragged away. Your escaped partners watch  from behind bushes as you are dragged away to your punishment: No dinner!

Week 11-Day 4-Western Movie

In this penultimate week to my BerkleeMusic course called, ‘Creative Writing: Finding Your Voice’, we are continuing our work with metaphor. We are given an object (Western Movie); we are charged with picking a linking quality (Adventurous) and a comparison object (Team of Arctic Explorers). We are asked to write for 10 minutes about our topic (Western Movie) but using words from our other object (Team of Arctic Explorers) to describe it. Finally, we are asked to flip it around and describe the comparison object (Team of  Arctic Explorers) with words that you might use to describe the given object (Western Movie).

My challenge has been that I slip confusingly back and forth from one to the other. Or I find the given object (Western Movie) uninspiring.  I read some about Western and Western Movie history, pondered on the qualities associated with Western Movies, and chose one.  It bothers me that they seem to sound similar. I was hoping for something more interesting. Oh, well.  Here’s another link in the chain to building better writing skills!

Western Movie -> Adventurous -> Team of Arctic Explorers
The group decided on their basecamp: Ashtonville, Texas. Two mountain ranges of deserted storefronts formed a central, barren corridor. The harsh landscape warned them from further entry. Winds whistled around solitary cacti in cloud bursts, burn-freezing the inside of the cowboys’ ears with icy fury. The men shouted to each other, signaling with their gloved hands where to drive the the stakes of their spurs. The men took out their pickaxes and started to chip away at the desert sands. They sweated inside their Texas uniforms, bandana’s wrapped around their faces to keep out the dust flying into their skin.  With their backs straining under a dark, ominous sky, the cowboys raised their tents. Standing in a single line, the men passed their tent supplies from one to the next.  When their covered wagon was unpacked, the men retreated to their canvas cave in the middle of their Nowheresville. Mark struggled to zip up the door. The others nailed down the edge of the canvas sides that met the dirt where it was not already held down by their supplies. The men sat around in a circle on their sleeping bags, each one silently unwrapping his protective uniform off his wiry, Texan frame. A small leather waterbag was passed around; each man took the smallest sip possible. A coyote howled. Dust balls hit the side of the tent. The men listened.

Team of Arctic Explorers is a Western movie
The men hustled their animals, their tent, and their supplies down the narrow trail between the two Arctic mountain ranges. The band of five brothers roped themselves together in a straight line. The wilderness called around them. Howls. Cries. A scream cut off. The brothers stopped, swore loyalty to one another, and continued on. The eldest, John, led the way. Nothing would stop them. The sheriff promised the research team a reward: bring home the thief. Get paid. Watch as they hang ’em high! Riches. Feeding their families. Telegrams by covered wagons led by Huskies back East. Warm thoughts of money spurred them on. Gold coin. A hot bath. A hot meal, better than these survival granola-flax-peanut butter snack bars. Roar! A bear stood in their way. On the other side, a frozen lake with an opening. The men huddled under their hats and broke away with shots in the air. Pumped! Full of internal fire, hunger, and need, the men circled around the bear. ROAR! The white bear got down on all fours, ready to pounce. From all directions, the men fired down on the white bear. Red covered white in drips and streaks. Hearts raced. John stepped slowly toward the bear, poking it with the end of his rifle. Dead. They removed their hats, held them over their hearts, and thanked God for their good fortune. The men heaved the bear onto the portable cot, and dragged it back to their basecamp. Yes!

Week 11 Day 3-Cobwebs

Hello!

Today’s writing asked us to take the word cobweb, pick a linking quality, find another thing that shared that quality, and then write for 10 minutes about cobwebs in words that illuminate the linking quality with nouns, adjectives, and verbs from the other shared item. Whew! That’s a confusing summary. Here’s what I did — this will make it clearer. Sort of. Sometimes I start writing things that sound better if I was writing in the other direction. That’s the thing I’m learning this week. I can tell – I’m gonna need a looooooooooot of practice.

Cobwebs -> Capture -> Armies
The threads of the cobwebs spread out from one corner of the doorway. In camouflaged, semi-invisible lines, cobwebs hide their numbers from their enemy  flies. They shimmer in the light of the desert day, blending in harmoniously with the oases that tease from a distance. The approaching fly troops mark a straight line, hoping to penetrate the interior by sheer force and numbers. The flies underestimate the threads that belie the power in their ultimate weapon of choice. The stickiness binds the flies legs and abdomens like rope lines suddenly pulled to fell the enemies’ legs. The troops subdue the body of the flies after a few minutes of struggle. The cobweb’s commanding officer drops a line down to where the enemy is being held. He wants to see for himself that the enemy is captured.  The black widow spider pulls out his hands, hold his enemy in his hands, and then pierces the fly with the knife on his machine gun and empties his poison into the fly.  A few seconds later, still and stiff as a wooden plank, the spider binds up the fly, carries him to up to the corner, and leaves him for the troops to snack on. The spider returns to his desk and waits for the call from his troops to parachute in for the final kill once again.

Armies are cobwebs
The troops last assignment: fan out in straight lines to hide their numbers; go from corner to corner and stick together so that no enemy can break through the lines; hold your positions and do not move unless ordered to do so. The men dutifully walked single file until they hit a wall. They turned direction approximately 20 degrees to the right and kept on walking. Meanwhile, the commanding officer sent a second division up towards the top of the hill. One by one, they parachuted on silk threads down until they reached the other division at a second spot along the wooden wall, through which they could not go.  Meeting up, the troops walked inwards, two by two for a brief time, then walked or flew in the opposite direction, until they met back at base camp. All through the night, they worked tirelessly to build their camp. Animals called to each other eerily. The hair on the arms and legs of the troops stood up but they kept going. Towards dawn, their camp complete, the men slept. One kept watch over their camp, on the lookout for any invaders. Finally! An alarm rang out. The men looked up — space invaders! Flies darkened the skies. Legs trembled and hearts raced. How can we tame the incoming beast? Working together the men folded in on the alien more strongly when there was struggle. The men wrapped around the alien and delivered the stunning blow to the gut. All was quiet. A breeze blew. Men wafted gently and then broke away from the camp. The site of the beast overcome sickened them. Some men regrouped, going over their plan. The commander arrived. He surveyed their capture. He pierced its armor and ate quietly, under the hungry eyes of his submission troops.

Week 10 Assignment – Pain is a Teacher

Pain is the teacher who carefully lays out the lesson plan to fit every day of our lives. Her tiny cryptic scrawls cover the blackboard in white. As we file into our seats, the smell of chalks fills our nostrils and covers our tongues, and seeps into our skin.

Pain pop-quizzes us Monday mornings when we are slack with sleep at our desks. Do we really have to do this now? Our Trapper Keepers and textbooks slap closed and land on the floor with a satisfying thud.

Pain surprises us with last-minute room changes posted on our classroom door, two hours after the class ended. There is no room 5-B in our two-story building. As we sit in study hall, we sweat and ring our hands. Our stomachs clench and make us dizzy with anticipation. Did we fail?

Pain tests our critical thinking skills. Turn the wrong way and pain stops us with a smack of the ruler on our backsides, bringing our attention back to the beginning of the lesson plan. Extra credit assignments stack high and sway menacingly over us. Panic rips our guts apart. How will get through this? We pass notes when the teacher isn’t looking. The test paper answers change when we aren’t looking.

After high school, birthdays become our only progress chart. Blind to the future, we grope around in the dark, searching for the light switch but sticking our fingers in the sockets and getting shocked. Our hands stick to the plate from an ungrounded outlet. We pull away, only to be drawn back into the electrical center. Zap! Zot! Muscles tense hard. We pull away hard and try again. Nothing deters us. Into the sockets our fingers go. The intensity holds us hostage and we reflexively shout. Our senses are in sharpest focus. Pain courses through our blood and electrifies us into action. Our hearts or legs get broken.

After the power has been shut off, ee close our eyes hard and pretend our lesson isn’t there. Our discipline disintegrates. We pull out hair in frustration at our lack of learning. Don’t you wish it would end and we could get some peace? We cry: No fair! Our only answer is the squeak of a rusted door that is moved slowly back and forth by the wind.

Week 8-Linking Qualities and Target Ideas

One of the co-writers for the BerkleeMusic class I’m taking likes to torture his students metaphorically. The cad purposely withheld vital information from us last week, just to see us suffer! Ahem. At least, that’s what he says.

In the intro video, Pat teaches the class a trick: When you want to write a metaphor, ask yourself these two questions:

  1. What qualities does my object have?
  2. What else has those qualities?

For example, you might choose ‘policeman’ for your first object. Ask yourself: What are the qualities of a policeman? He protects. Then you ask: What else protects? You pick something: flu vaccine. And then you write a sentence that describes how one is like the other. For example:

The policemen vaccinate the city against the symptoms of gangs. 

Voila! Like that, you have an analogy.

More fun tomorrow…..

Week 7 Assignment-Expressed Identity

This week’s assignment asks us to pick one of our writing pairs from this week, expand it to 200-400 words,  and write it in third-person POV. My teacher liked my treehouse/book pair so I wrote more on that one.

Expressed Identity: Treehouse/book

            David spent his leisurely hours climbing up the boards that were nailed into the side of the oak every six inches until he reached the landing outside the treehouse door. After pulling back the curtain, David steps into ‘The Adventures of the Pirate Brothers,’ a miniseries filled with swashbuckling adventures in arcs of fighting, treasure hunting, and stealing ships from enemy pirates. Fiercer than Blackbeard, the Pirate David dedicates his life to sailing the fictional high seas, his best friends at his side, cannon blasting any girls who dare to kiss them, and going down like a pirate should, with drops of his spilled blood decorating the ocean floor and wide-brimmed hat slowly drowning under rocky waves.

David sat down on the wide oak boards that bound the floor, the walls, and the flat roof cover together in tight, parallel lines. He pressed his blue ballpoint hard into the parchment and slowly carved the names of each club member in a list on the left side of the paper: David, Simon, and Mark. To the right of each name, he drew an underline where they would sign in cherry-juice blood and pledge allegiance to their crew. A blue jay screams outside the window cranny, which opens out towards the well-mowed lawn. A black curtain hangs heavily in the doorway with an unevenly stapled sign marked ‘X’ in thick red marker. The sound of footsteps thuds up the planks and hushed hurried whispers heighten the anticipation.  David froze, trying hard not to breathe or think ahead and guess the ending. Three knocks and a unified round of ‘yo-ho-hos!’ mark the beginning of the next fearsome chapter.

Week 7-Day 5-Noun Collisions

Day 5 – Nouns (+My Nouns) Collisions

friendship/bikini

Friendship is a white and red polka-dotted bikini, spaghetti straps laced gently around the neck of our years laughing together in front of the television. Frills beckon around soft edges. The bottom half rounds out our one-piece vision of love, laughter, and sandy-toed afternoons.

tugboat/pride

The pride of tugboats hauls twenty ton steel aircraft carriers across the Caspian Sea in boastful puffs of diesel.

trust/wallet

No door zips opens wider, channels flush with untouched twenty dollar bills, than trust’s wallet.

vacation/slippers

Let’s open the door open to the porch at 8am on Monday morning and let the gentle breezes glide in. Fresh air wafts up one nostril, then the next, calming and comforting one’s servers. Step into vacation’s slippers and walk muffled steps along your oak floors.

wealth/sidewalk

Wealth is a sidewalk that wends this way and that, from concrete slabs, to brick, to sleek sealed tar. Sneakers, high heels, and flip flops openly flaunt their income levels, without having to make a sale.

treehouse/book

The book of treehouses draws up floor plans for pirate escapades in years past, the backyard marked for gold in a large ‘X’ in the upper right corner, a sign that says ‘No gurlz’ in dark parchment paper, and a bibliography of little boy initials carved in the bark of the tree.

laughter/convoy

Laughter’s convoy echoes long and far away. People sit up and pay attention to the Doppler of giggles that roar past out of a passing truck’s window. A line of cars follows, interrupted by smiling cheerleaders on paper flower floats, a homecoming party parade.

money/flute

Money is a flute that sings its lonesome note as it walks through the town center on cobblestone streets. Children mistake it for the song of adulthood and chase after the song far after the dinner bell has rung, leaving them stranded for the wolves that must come.

argument/song

The song of argument lulls you with its melody. You cannot fight the urge to swing your hips, tape your toes in a toe-step, and fall in line with the other dancers. Swept away, your body responds, your mind shuts down, and you memorize words that are not your own.

cemetery/cruise

Cemetery’s cruise brings you along all the sites, from Major John’s son who died in childbirth before he ever left port, to Rev. Marks who called on every world port to repent. With two feet on just-turned dirt and head down, one can see the world in shades of green and gray.

Week 7 – Day 4-Nouns (+MyNouns) Collisions

More writing class catchup…. this is Day 4’s collisions (yesterday’s) between ten pairs of nouns. The first noun I was given; the second noun I added. Then I came up with descriptive collisions.  I’ll catch up with today tomorrow…

Day 4 – Nouns (+My Nouns) Collisions 

notebook/train

A notebooks is a train of thoughts, chugging along inky tracks, from New York to Peoria, making local stops and getting derailed once or twice.

rainstorm/circus

A circus of rainstorms paraded down onto the town, playing its off-key rhythmic notes onto the stalwartly slate tiles, and mocking inhabitants who dared to peek under their front doors.

temper/pinwheel

Temper’s pinwheel spins wildly around in a gust of colors, angry pinks and oranges clash with sprightly silver, plastic swirling and clicking in a revel-like panic.

regret/broadway play

Regret is a Broadway play where the cast of characters gets stuck on repeat and comes out one last time for a curtain call to an empty theater.

crown/food truck

The crown’s food truck lacked lustre and hid bits of dried out food, scaring her subjects away with thoughts of getting stuck in the gulag with Listeria.

desire/bicycle

Desires unmet are an out-of-control bicycle whose rider is without her training wheels for the first time, unable to guide or stop her two-wheeled cruiser.

harbor/transmitter

The transmitter of harbors calls out to seamen over high-frequency sailing channels, heard only by whales and radios that capture the memo signals.

knowledge/traffic light

The school system is the traffic light of knowledge; the red shadow of ignorance casts its standstill pall over its audience; the green aura of education enlightens all those it blesses.

lighthouse/marksman

The lighthouse’s marksman shines its light with masterful precision onto its targets far below on the snarling seas.

memory/ghost ship

Alzheimer’s is memory’s ghost ship that leaves its passengers traveling without a tour guide, photos, or destination.

Week 7 – Day 3 – Noun/Noun Collisions

Okay, well, today isn’t day 3 — it’s day 5. And I’m behind. Wish I could catch up sooner but I let personal things get in my way. Back to writing….

cobwebs/enrollment

The cobweb’s enrollment grew in sticky leaps and ghostly bounds, even as its dried, abandoned legs fell off the corners above Wilbur’s pigsty.

belief/orchestra

Dante conducted Hell’s orchestra of beliefs above the hot, fiery pit of ancient lost souls.

debt/embrace

Debt’s embrace held me tight in its greedy arms, obliging me to fulfill my dead obligations with the rare days of my life.

decision/ignition

My commitment to ignite my future by taking a risk in the present fired me up to relax and let it go.

hatred/prescription

A lethal dose of hatred is exactly what the Devil prescribed when Cain’s petty illness caused him to seek out the orders of Dr. Evil.

cobwebs/prescription

Charlotte ordered her cobweb to take in six flies a day, three in the morning and three at night. If the sticky fingers refused to obey her every command, Charlotte got her pharmacist’s go-ahead to abandon her web to the West winds.

belief/enrollment

Mark’s enrollment of belief came before he was old enough to be allowed to pick his own major.

debt/orchestra

Debt is a financial orchestra of ruin, a classical ballet of form and figure where dancers swing their way into an obligatory tragedy.

decision/embrace

Before you are bogged down by your decision’s embrace, adopt a devil-may-care attitude and let go into your next phase of life.

hatred/ignition

His hatred’s ignition sparked his descent into an earthly perdition.

Week 7-Day 2 Pt 2-Expressed Identity

Hello! I had a brief opportunity to catch up with the writing from yesterday’s class assignment.  These are the same 10 words I posted yesterday, but in different pairings of 5 each. I was lazy, so I simply reordered the suggested words to help me get started in writing.

An accountant is a quilt

CPA

Knitting

boring

Wool, thread

April 15th

covers

numbers

heavy

The IRS

decorative

 An accountant is the CPA of quilted comfort, knitted wool of numbers settling on you in a reassuring, boring fashion. An accountant covers the blow of exposing your wallet to the deep-reaching fingers of the IRS, with a heavy resignation. April 15th may signal the beginning of troubles yet to come, but you will be kept warm and toasty under the accountant’s decorative spread.

 A football coach is a storm cloud

sport

darkness

helmet

threatening

rushing

thunder

Graceful loser

lightning

encouragement

gusts

A football coach is a storm cloud of thundering cleats in a field of soaked muddy puddles.  The rush of helmet thundering against helmet, angry billows of grunts rise up from the not-yet men, urged onward by gusty yelling.

The violin of kites

strings

kites

symphony

flying

instrument

March

Stradivarius

Twigs + paper bag

music

caught

The KT9000 is the violin of kites, swiftly and deftly arcing through the air in graceful movements, even when the March wind crescendos in cacophony against it. Rainbow silk woven against wooden cross instruments sails aloft in perfect pitch of color and visual freedom, a symphony of rhythms that only young boys with their fathers seem to hear while in the stadium of a sunny, blustery afternoon in the park.

The ballet dancer of love letters

Swan Lake

handwriting

Prima ballerina

Hand-made paper

Tchaikovsky

Pen, ink

Tiptoes, on pointe

Swoops

Pirouette

Ink drops

The ballet dancer of love letters guides you in leaps and bounds across the page, in large swathes of lusty black ink, which seem to pirouette in slightly darker spots across the page.

Shame’s moon

embarrassment

Crescent, full, half, sliver

Fear

Tides

punishment

Ebb, neap

humiliated

Glow

fearful

Night

Your punishment glows upon me, surging my humiliation in sudden tides of pain. No night for me, I am embarrassed under shame’s full moon, revealing my inner darkness to examination against the shore of your loveliness. What remains of me is a mere sliver of my fearful soul.

Week 7-Day 2-Expressed Identity

I have a confession: I have not enjoyed most of the first six weeks of my creative writing course. Until now.

I watched this week’s Introductory video in which Pat Pattison explains expressed identity. When you have two nouns and you compare/contrast them in the ways below, it’s important to choose two nouns that don’t make literal sense when compared; otherwise, what you have is a description. (Paraphrase from course materials). In short, you compare the two nouns in one of these three forms, otherwise known as ‘express identity’:

x = y
the x of y
y‘s x

In today’s writing, we were given ten pairs of nouns. I read each pair in each of the three forms and decided which one I would write.  I took these pairs, created two columns, and wrote the first five attributes that I associated with that noun. Beginning with the expressed identity I chose, I wrote a paragraph. I could only get through my first five pairs this evening. The second set of five noun pairs where the same words but reordered.  I will try to catch up tomorrow. At the very least, I will do five noun pairs from tomorrow’s given selection instead.

Week 7 – Day 2 – Expressed Identity or Noun on Noun Collisions

accountant/storm cloud

an accountant is a storm cloud

CPA

darkness

boring

threatening

April 15th

thunder

numbers

lightning

The IRS

gusts

An accountant is a boring storm cloud, full of cold air and heavy rains sheeting down in needle-thin lines on your tax return of easy living. Steadily pouring over each line item, an accountant blows financials gently forward via your W-2 and 1099. The accumulation drowns your hopes for recovery from your budgeting darkness. No lessening of your April 15th forecast, gloomy for the foreseeable future.

football coach/violin

a football coach is a violin

sport

strings

helmet

symphony

rushing

instrument

Graceful loser

Stradivarius

encouragement

music

A football coach is a violin, conducting his sporty orchestra in swelling crescendos to their first-string victories. The sweet sounds of fans clapping, parents singing out to their children, and the musical stress of a spiking football. The best football coaches are instruments of practice, play the leading grace notes in loss, and provide symphonic encouragement to all team members.

kite/ballet dancer

the ballet dancer of kites

Swan Lake

kites

Prima ballerina

flying

Tchaikovsky

March

Tiptoes, on pointe

Twigs + paper bag

Pirouette

caught

The ballet dancer of kites is dressed in rainbow silk, golden rods, and tightened with a belt of ecru twine that stretches down to your fingers. Gaily flying through the air, your Prima Ballerina sways back and forth in skillful arcs, aided by a gusty toss from March winds.  Bourgeois twigs and roughly hewn paper bags spectate in awe, their Swan Lake audition as wispy and far away as the clouds born high above the earth.

love letter/moon

moon’s love letter

Crescent, full, half, sliver

handwriting

Tides

Hand-made paper

Ebb, neap

Pen, ink

Glow

Swoops

Night

Ink drops

The moon’s love letter whispers silver words in a bold spotlight of hope onto the inky landscape of your heart. Black trails of longing that mark the corners of your soul ebb away as you read each glowing desire on the handmade paper. Perfume tides wash upwards into your nose as you drink the floral aromas that rush into your lungs and bury your worries at sea.

shame/quilt

quilt’s shame

embarrassment

Knitting

Fear

Wool, thread

punishment

covers

humiliated

heavy

fearful

decorative

The quilt’s shame unraveled itself embarrassingly, caught on the punishing edge of your 1850’s antique wooden chest, after you yanked it mightily out into service for your winter cover. Decorative blushes of reds and pinks fearfully crisscross with retiring spring flowers, a complex humiliation of the quilt’s psychology.